Abraham scores again as Chelsea beat Palace

Mason Mount walks off the pitch against Ajax

"At half-time the manager said we needed to stay focused and the chances would come".

Chelsea had four academy graduates starting and it was one of those - Tammy Abraham - who vitally broke the deadlock in the 52nd minute.

A dominant Blues struggled to find the breakthrough against a packed Crystal Palace defence before the break, despite Willian and Christian Pulisic posing problems throughout.

Chelsea FC can win six successive Premier League fixtures for the first time since their title-winning season under Antonio Conte back in May 2017. I know the academy well so that gave us a head start.

"This is where we want to be", Pulisic told ESPN Brasil when asked about his side's league position after the game. Thus, soon we can see the Spaniard fading away from the top spot in the pecking order and giving way to James.

Pulisic didn't get a Premier League start from August until October 26, when he took full advantage with a hat trick against Burnley.

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Today's London Derby took on all an altogether predictable pattern right from the off, with Chelsea starting brightly and dominating possession, but Palace's well-drilled defensive set up making it extremely hard to create clear cut chances. Kanté had injured his groin on global duty with France last month.

The Chelsea manager was rewarded for his show of faith in the 19-year-old with a performance that demonstrated James belongs at the highest level on his first Premier League start.

James put in a solid performance, especially against Palace winger Wilfried Zaha.

'I'm proud", said Lampard, "but it's still a snap shot of what is the bigger picture here and a relative snapshot of the season. Kepa Arrizabalaga in the Chelsea goal reacted well to get low and hold the slippery ball in heavy rain.

The early kickoff on Saturday in the Premier League might just be the best game of the weekend in England, as two of the most entertaining teams in the country so far face-off in what should be a fantastic London Derby.

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